POLIO NEWS - November 2022
Dear polio eradication supporter,
Implementing successful polio vaccination campaigns is critical to stopping transmission and keeping communities safe. Last month, Zimbabwe joined Malawi, Tanzania, Zambia, and Mozambique in their efforts to strengthen polio immunization and surveillance following the re-emergence of type 1 wild poliovirus in Southeast Africa earlier this year. Community-based tactics to educate and address misinformation are supporting vaccine uptake in Zimbabwe, and with continued commitment from affected countries and their neighbors, we can stop further transmission in Africa—and prevent a resurgence of the virus around the world. This effort is more important now than ever, as African countries grapple with dangerously low immunization rates for polio and other vaccine-preventable diseases, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
To reinvigorate political attention and action on immunization across the continent, H.E. Macky Sall (Chair of the African Union and President of the Republic of Senegal), will bring together Heads of State, civil society organizations, and other key stakeholders at the Forum on Immunization and Polio Eradication on 10 December in Dakar, Senegal, to remobilize leadership around the Addis Declaration on Immunization. Learn more about this impactful forum and tune in on 10 December at www.remobilizeadi.org/.
Pakistan’s mission to eradicate polio
Pakistan is on a mission to end polio, but a sudden surge in cases has alarmed those fighting for eradication. In collaboration with Rotary, Pakistan’s polio programme is working closely with the national government to better reach high-risk populations and build community trust to improve vaccine acceptance. The key to eradication? Keeping vaccination coverage rates high amid flooding and other persistent challenges.
We know how to stop polio, now we need global support
Dr Rose Leke and Dr Zulfi Bhutta, co-leads of the 2022 Scientific Declaration on Polio Eradication, know that ending polio relies on three pillars: surveillance, vaccination, and innovation. Having both lived and worked in communities plagued by this disease, they have witnessed the powerful tools and strategies in action to end polio for good—and with the full support of countries around the world, they are sure we can succeed.
A polio survivor’s message to the world
Myra James has lived with the burden of polio since she was 11 months old. She never imagined, though, that her grandchildren would also be at risk of this life-threatening disease. The recent detection of polio in the UK reinforced the fact that diseases respect no borders. In this account, Myra urges her government to reaffirm its commitment to ending polio and calls for increased vaccination to reach all children. Another polio survivor, Miki Boleen, shares this sentiment, and calls on parents to immunize their children so that no child has to suffer as she did.
POLIO IN NUMBERS
Wild Poliovirus in 2022 (2021)*
Global Total: 30 (4)
Circulating Vaccine Derived Poliovirus in 2022 (2021)*
Global Total: 528 (466)
*Data as of 30 November 2022. Numbers in brackets represent data at this time in 2021.
Breakdown by country Polio this week
POLIO IN THE NEWS
STAT: Employing everyday public health efforts to respond to polio’s re-emergence. (Ashwin Vasan, 9 Nov 2022)
Arab News: The last mile in long fight to eradicate polio. (Michael Jennings, 8 Nov 2022)
International Health: Polio has recently been detected in places like London, New York, Ukraine and Israel–but what does it really mean to the global eradication effort? (Aidan O’Leary, 7 Nov 2022)
TIME: The differences between the two polio vaccines - and the new one on the horizon. (Jeffrey Kluger, 2 Nov 2022)
WHO thanks Luxembourg for its generous contribution of €300 000 which will support WHO’s global polio eradication activities.
WHO is grateful to Germany for a €35 million contribution in support of GPEI polio eradication activities worldwide which re-affirms its long-standing political and financial commitment to a polio-free world.
WHO thanks Monaco for a €300 000 contribution to polio eradication activities worldwide and for outstanding political support throughout the years.
WHO acknowledges gratefully Liechtenstein, which provided Sw.fr. 25 000 to support to global polio eradication operations.
WHO thanks Canada for releasing Can$ 30 million as part of its Can$ 100 million contributions to polio eradication operations worldwide, Can$ 3.5 million corresponding to its Can$ 10 million contributions to polio eradication efforts in Pakistan and Can$ 2.5 million related to its Can$ 10 million contributions to polio eradication operations in Afghanistan.
WHO is grateful to Malta for contributing €30 000 to polio eradication operations worldwide.
WHO thanks Türkiye for its US$ 20 000 contribution to global polio eradication activities.
A woman health worker goes door to door to vaccinate children in Pakistan against polio. © Ministry of National Health Services